Finland’s biodiversity policy

A process to prepare a new National Biodiversity Strategy and an action plan to 2030 related to this is currently underway. In addition to national objectives, the strategy takes into account the objectives of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity and the new EU Biodiversity Strategy. This process should be completed in the early part of 2022.

The strategy will enhance the protection of biodiversity and promote the restoration of degraded ecosystems. In addition, methods to measure the actions and their impacts will be developed. The strategy and action plan will be linked to the objectives set internationally and within the EU.

A new Biodiversity Strategy will be needed as the biodiversity of Finnish natural environments continues to decline. The decline is even faster than before if measured by the number of threatened species. The aim of the strategy is to halt the loss of biodiversity and turn the trend towards recovery by 2030.

National action plan for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in Finland 2013–2020

The main objective of the Strategy for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity, ‘Saving Nature for People’, was to halt the loss of biodiversity in Finland by 2020. It placed the focus of decision-making concerning the use of natural resources on the economic and cultural values of biodiversity. 

The strategy stressed the need to mainstream issued related to the natural environment to all sectors of society, involvement of new actors to work for the benefit of nature, decision-making based on solid scientific knowledge and, as part of the international community, Finland’s responsibility for natural environments on the global scale. The strategy also outlined ways to link the traditional knowledge of the Sámi people to the protection of biodiversity.

International decisions and EU objectives were taken into account in the strategy. In addition to these, it was based on extensive national surveys and studies on the state of biodiversity in Finland and the threats that have impacts on this.

The measures of the Action Plan whose implementation had been the most successful at the beginning of 2019 were those related to communication and training, international affairs and monitoring. In terms of habitats, measures related to forests and the Baltic Sea had succeeded the best. Most of the measures under these themes were considered as completed or well established.

Despite the large number of measures that had been completed or were an established practice, only one out of ten measures were considered to have led to a clearly improving trend with respect to the theme. One reason for this was that not all of the measures were sufficiently clear or ambitious.

The measures that had the most positive impact on biodiversity included cooperation, independent implementation, sufficient self-funding and effective production of information. Based on the assessment, the themes of the Action Plan that were the most important and had the widest impact were communication and training, financial steering, legislation, zoning and land use, and the restoration and management of habitats

Further information

Further information

Olli Ojala, Senior Ministerial Adviser 
Ministry of the Environment, Department of the Natural Environment, Biodiversity 0295250039